2013-2014 Academy Accolades

Crescendo issue: June 2014
One of the highlights of the year for many within the Interlochen community is the end of year wrap-up.

This is when each arts and academic division director sends in a listing of the many accomplishments of their students. It's always an exciting time for staff, faculty and students. We're happy to pass a few highlighted achievements of our student body along to you!

Motion Picture Arts

Colin Campbell (IAA 2013), Lixing (Mida) Chu (IAA 2014) and Kira Bursky (IAA 2014) were all finalists in the Cinematic Arts category for the YoungARTS competition.They celebrated their placement in Miami and New York in January. They were 3 of the 7 finalists in YoungARTS.

Kira Bursky went on to be a finalist in the running for Presidential Scholar in the Arts. She was the only finalist this year at Interlochen Arts Academy.

Kira was honored at the White House for her short film in the first White House Youth Film Festival. She and the star of her short met President Obama in a special reception and photo opportunity.

Kira Bursky, Mida Chu, Colin Campbell (IAA '13) and Nic Weinfeld (IAA '12) had their films selected to screen in the NFFTY film festival in Seattle, WA. NFFTY is the largest youth film festival in the United States.

Senior Miles Carey was accepted to Princeton University and will be attending in the fall.

Elena Jacob is a finalist of the National Merit Scholar Award and will be studying Psychology in the fall.

Creative Writing

Sojourner Ahebee, was named one of five National Young Poets, and met with first lady Michelle Obama.


  • Megan Walters, finalist, short story
  • Alexandra Stasiuk, merit award, poetry

Norman Mailer Prize

  • Megan Binkley, Non-Fiction semi-finalist

Sante Fe School of Art and Design, High School Writing Contest, First place: Molly McDaniel

Anne Malin Ringwalt, placed in Dancing Girl Press chapbook contest and will be published in chapbook format in early 2014.

First Place in the Inaugural Sante Fe University of Art and Design Glazner Prize for Creative Writing: Molly McDaniels

Third place in the Albion College Charles Crupi Memorial Poetry Contest: Molly McDaniels

Michigan Young Playwrights Festival: The following students were selected as finalists in the Michigan Young Playwrights festival. Their original plays were performed at the Traverse City Opera House in April.

  • Christopher Campbell
  • Alexandra Stasiuk
  • Miles Carey
  • Haley Robinson
  • Eleanor Rudnitsky-Brown

Winner of the Blank Theatre Company's Young Playwrights Competition: Nayereh Doosti.

Scholastic Art & Writing Awards National Award Winners

  • Sojourner Ahebee: National Silver Medal for Writing Portfolio.
  • Eleanor Rudnitsky Brown: National Silver Medal for Writing Portfolio.

Theatre Arts

YoungArts recognition

  • Finalist
    • Marina Kondo 
    • Ben Lohrberg
    • Marina Kondo
  • Merit Awards
    • Jennifer Klink
    • Sophina Saggau
    • Sara Pidgeon
    • Ross Bloedorn 
Other awards and recognitions
  • Fine Arts Award
    • Aiden Ankli 
    • Calvin Brady 
    • Chris Campbell 
    • Haley Robinson - Will be attending Juilliard in the fall
    • Luke D'Allesandro
    • Grace Fojtik
  • Luke D'Allesandro - Won 2nd place in the University of Illinois Applied and Fine Arts Costume Design Competition. 
  • Grace Fojtik - Received the Jim Harvey Leadrship Award and received a Fine Arts award from Theatre.
  • Julia Steenstra - Received the Upstart Crow Award from Theatre.
  • Ben Lohrberg - Received the Dustin Tucker Achievement Award.


Rachel Clemente, harp, junior placed second in the Masters Category at the National Scottish Harp Competition; her ensemble placed first in the ensemble category (2013)

Ray Han, horn, senior was named a finalist for From the Top

Weston McCall, horn, senior was named a Finalist for the Texas Association of Symphony Orchestras "Juanita Miller Concerto Competition"

Caelan Steward, horn, senior was named a semi-Finalist for the President's Own Concerto Competition.

Young Arts Awards

  • Finalists:
    • Sage, DeAgro-Ruopp, voice
    • Seong Jin (Ray) Han, horn
    • India Rowland, voice
    • William Socolof, voice
  • Honorable Mention:
    • Hannah Criswell, flute, senior
    • Kaci Cummings, horn, senior
    • Hae Sol (Amy) Hur, clarinet, senior
    • Victoria (Ina) McCormack, harp, senior
    • Leo Taylor, percussion, senior
    • Casey Voss, percussion, senior
  • Merit:
    • Tevan Goldberg, composition, senior
    • Caelan Stewart, horn, senior.

Singer-Songwriter students, Hannah Ayrault and Ruby Collins were chosen for the Composer Competition in Grand Rapids in January 2014.

Julian Fueyo, composition, has been selected to be a part of the inaugural edition of MATA Jr. His piece, Catrina's Dance, will be played by Face the Music at one of two concerts planned for November 2014, exact dates and location to be determined.

Seniors Henry Solomon, saxophone, and Tevan Goldberg, composure, were awarded a Downbeat music award for the outstanding jazz arrangement on 2014.

Henry Solomon was a member of the Grammy High School Jazz Ensemble and will be a member of the Next Generation Monterrey Jazz Festival All-Star Jazz Ensemble this summer.

Senior horn student Ray Seong Jin Han participated at the YoungArts Miami week as a YoungArts Finalist. Ray was one of only two horn players in the country selected as a finalist. Senior horn students Kaci Cummings and Caelan Stewart were also honored by YoungArts with honorable mention and merit winner awards.

Seong Jin Han was the horn winner in the Yamaha Young Performing Artist, which recognizes outstanding young musicians from the world of classical, jazz and contemporary music. Ray was invited to attend an all-expense paid weekend at the Music for All™ Summer Symposium.

Senior horn student Caelan Stewart was selected for the second straight year to be a member of the horn section of the National Youth Orchestra of the USA. This year, the orchestra will be doing a coast to coast national tour, including a performance in Carnegie Hall.

Senior horn student Ray Seong Jin Han was also selected as a finalist for the program From The Top. From the Top alumni are now playing in top orchestras such as the New York Philharmonic, managing solo careers, and pursuing fields outside of music.

Horn seniors Kaci Cummings and Ray Seong Jin Han were advanced to the quarterfinals of this year's Fischoff National Chamber Music Competition. Kaci and her brass quintet "Forte Five" were the only brass quintet in the country to be advanced to the live rounds, and Ray and his woodwind quintet "Equinox" were the only woodwind quintet to be advanced to the live rounds.


Many collaberations and outstanding performances took place throughout the Academy season.

There were 4 students who participated in the Youth America Grand Prix Competition in Chicago in February. Austin Meiteen won second place in both Classical and Contemporary categories. Derek Brockington was given a full pay scholarship to the 8-week program at Ballet West in Salt Lake City.

Elsa Annika Elisabet Hultin was accepted to Ball State University, Cornish College of the Arts, Goucher College, Oklahoma City University, and Dean College. She will be attending Dean College.

Ayami Ino was accepted to University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music and Boston Conservatory. Ayami will be attending Boston Conservatory.

Angela Marie Koskowich was accepted to Ball State University, Rider University, and Point Park University. She will be attending Point Park University.

Mackenzie Louise Larrance was accepted to Ball State University, Hope College, Marymount Manhattan College, Point Park University, Wayne State University, Western Michigan University, and the University of Michigan. She will be attending the University of Michigan.

Kelli Anne Miles was accepted to Elon University, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities. She will be attending the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities.

Abigail Lynn Purcell was accepted to Dominican University of California, Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey at New Brunswick (Mason Gross School of the Arts), The University of Arizona (Fine Arts), University of Colorado at Boulder (College of Arts & Sciences), Wayne State University, and George Mason University. She will be attending George Mason University.

Alyx Rom Henigman was accepted to Cornish College of the Arts, Shenandoah University, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and the Boston Conservatory. Alyx will be attending the Boston Conservatory.

Claire Patterson Dietrich will be attending the Alonzo King Lines Training Program in San Francisco.

Annalise Martine Sapp was accepted to the University of Utah and the Nashville Ballet Training Program. She will be attending the Nashville Ballet Training Program.

Johanna Hayes will be attending the Alonzo King Lines Training Program in San Francisco.

Visual Arts

All Visual Art seniors were required to participate in the National Foundation for the Advancement of the Arts’ YoungARTS competition this year.

2014 Award Details:

  • YoungARTS
    • Finalist
      • Lena Jafery
      • Marko Jevtovic
    • Honorable Mention
      • Thomas Blair
      • Olivia Hagerty
      • Keara Dooley
      • Madison Brownson
      • Catalina Gonzalez
      • Carly Heathcote
    • Merit Award
      • Waseem Nafisi
      • Jami Shimon
      • Isabelle Rose
      • Duairak Padungvichean
  • Scholastic Art and Writing Awards
    • All Visual Art students were required to participate in the National Scholastic Art and Writing Competition this year. The seniors all submitted a portfolio of eight pieces, and the underclassmen submitted one or two individual pieces of art.
    • 2014 Regional Award Details
      • Art Portfolio:
        • Madison Brownson – Gold Key Portfolio
        • Claire Harvey – Gold Key Portfolio
        • Carly Heathcote – Gold Key Portfolio
        • Lena Jafery – Gold Key Portfolio
        • Marko Jevtovic – Gold Key Portfolio
        • Thomas Blair – Silver Key Portfolio
        • Kear Dooley – Silver Key Portfolio
        • Catalina Gonzalez – Silver Key Portfolio
        • Olivia Hagerty – Silver Key Portfolio
        • Illya Mousavijad – Silver Key Portfolio
        • Justina Sadecki – Silver Key Portfolio
        • Danielle Dinstman – Honorable Mention Portfolio
        • Ellen Seidell - Honorable Mention Portfolio
        • Jami Shimon - Honorable Mention Portfolio
        • YeJi Yang - Honorable Mention Portfolio
      • American Visions Medal:
        • SuWan Kim – American Visions Nominee
        • Huston Shartsis - American Visions Nominee
        • George Spica - American Visions Nominee (x2)
      • Individual Awards:
        • Angeling Cruz-Yen – Gold Key
        • Danielle Dinstman – Gold Key
        • Keara Dooley – Gold Key
        • Catalina Gonzalez (x2) – Gold Key
        • Olivia Hagerty – Gold Key
        • Claire Harvey – Gold Key
        • Carly Heathcote (x3) – Gold Key
        • SuWan Kim (x8) – Gold Key
        • Hanna Mills – Gold Key
        • Illya Mousavijad (x3) – Gold Key
        • Waseem Nafisi (x2) – Gold Key
        • Anela Oh (x3) – Gold Key
        • Doyun Park (x2) – Gold Key
        • Isabelle Perchaluk – Gold Key
        • Justina Sadecki (x2) – Gold Key
        • Nicholas Servaas (x3) – Gold Key
        • George Spica (x4) – Gold Key
        • Sarah Stewart – Gold Key
        • Haiyang Sun – Gold Key
        • Ryan Treadwell (x3) – Gold Key
        • Zihan Wang – Gold Key
        • James Weigle (x2) – Gold Key
        • Ryan Yale – Gold Key
        • Aiting Yan – Gold Key
        • YeJi Yang (x4) – Gold Key
        • Madison Brownson – Silver Key
        • Zhuoyi Chen – Silver Key
        • Danielle Dinstman – Silver Key
        • Leah Godchaux – Silver Key
        • Claire Harvey (x3) – Silver Key
        • Lena Jafery – Silver Key
        • Marko Jevtovic – Silver Key
        • SuWan Kim – Silver Key
        • Halle King (x3) – Silver Key
        • Jingting Kong – Silver Key
        • Illya Mousavijad (x2) – Silver Key
        • Anela Oh (x2) – Silver Key
        • Doyun Park (x2) – Silver Key
        • Michaela Robinson – Silver Key
        • Huston Shartsis (x2) – Silver Key
        • George Spica – Silver Key
        • Madison Stubbs – Silver Key
        • Jenna Trosien – Silver Key
        • Sendra Uebele – Silver Key
        • Zihan Wang – Silver Key
        • Ryan Yale – Silver Key
        • Thomas Blair – HM
        • Angeling Cruz-Yen – HM
        • Danielle Dinstman – HM
        • Catalina Gonzalez (x2) – HM
        • Claire Harvey (x2) – HM
        • Sophie Henslee – HM
        • SuWan Kim – HM
        • Ingrid Matison – HM
        • Anela Oh – HM
        • Duairak Padungvichean – HM
        • Julia Rush – HM
        • Justina Sadecki – HM
        • George Spica (x2) – HM
        • Madison Stubbs – HM
        • Haiyang Sun (x2) – HM
        • Ryan Treadwell (x2) – HM
        • Jenna Trosien (x2) – HM
        • Abbey Warburton – HM
        • Ryan Yale – HM
        • YeJi Yang (x2) – HM

Comparative Arts

Kelli Brush and Kendra Pratt were accepted into New York University

Rosalia Triana was accepted to Santa Fe University of Art and Design

Celine Sutter will be attending Oberlin College

Barbra Lounsbury was accepted to College of Creative Arts Studies, Deroit

Kiersten Bell was admitted to Hampshire College and Emerson College

Brennan Deckrow was accepted with a $40,000 scholarship to Alma College

Alena Vorozheykina graduated a year early and was accepted to Eugene Lang College, Pace University and Marymount Manhattan College

Emily Baker, a second year compartaive arts student was invited to a Red Wheelbarrow presentation to read a piece she wrote with the creative writing majors.

Kelli Brush was the first 4 year senior to graduate from the Comparative Arts department

Kendra Prat presented a piece in collaboration with a dance major, Julia Rubies at Honors Convocation

Celine Sutter and Mary Helen Porter received a Fine Arts Award

Kendra Prat won the Young Arts Award

Kiersten Bell received the Renaissance Award

Kelli Brush recieved the first Noble Award for leadership

Math and Science

Ada Brooks, Amrita Newton, and Ziyun Liu qualified as finalists in the 57th Annual Michigan Mathematics Prize Competition. The MMPC is offered by the Michigan Section of the Mathematical Association of America to encourage students to develop their interests and abilities in mathematics. The competition consists of a very challenging exam, given in two parts. Part I is open to all students in Michigan high schools, and contains 40 multiple-choice questions involving topics from high school mathematics. Twelve Interlochen students sat for Part I on October 1, 2013. Ada Brooks, Amrita Newton, Ziyun Liu were among the top 1200 students from 6300 students who took Part I, and so were invited to take Part II, which was given on December 11, 2013. Part II consists of five challenging problems to which the students must provide written explanations for their claims and mathematical proofs of their solutions.

Four students were named recipients of an A-STEP award for summer research: Ruby Collins, Jonathan Evans, Anela Oh and Kate Jagla.

Liberal Arts

National French Contest – This year we had three of Teresa Hittner's students ranked on a national level:

  • Elizabeth Pesavento – French I
  • Megan Walters – French II
  • Laurel Armes – French III

Several Interlochen students were recognized in the Scholastic Art and Writing Competition for academic essays that they had written for English instructors Tim Johnson and Maurine Slaughter and History instructor Daniel Asad. Senior Natasha Liu submitted essays she had written for all three of these teachers and won two Gold Key awards for Persuasive Writing and a Silver Key for Personal Essay/Memoir. Mr. Johnson's student Karenna Lief won a Gold Key for Personal Essay/Memoir, and his student Zoe Rohrich won an Honorable mention for Persuasive Writing.